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Mexico 1969-1992

1970 Move to Mexico

When Paul and Virginia (Ginny) moved to Guadalajara, Mexico in 1970, he was 57 years old. No longer receiving financial security from a permanent job, retired and now having to provide for his wife and daughter, Claudia, through a pension and selling his paintings, he had reached a turning point in his life.
He spent the first 18 months living in the Yuca Trailer Park in an 'enhanced' shack set upon a 36'x8' trailer patio. Where the trailer would set he had a tent built for painting.  Living in perfect weather, for $50 a month rent, playing tennis every day and all the fruit you could eat was his idea of paradise. His wife had other thoughts.

Paul worked exclusively in watercolor those first months, planning many of the designs he later used in larger works.

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Paul and Virginia in Guadalajara, 1970, Yuca Trailer Park,  in his yellow tent studio
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Acrylic , 60"x52"

Color Field Pictures "In review in "El informador", February 12, 1978, p. 8
There is no denying his vision has been enriched by the bright lights and tints peculiar to the Mexican tropics. Now colors added to his strong imaginative strain break out in vibrant clean, aggressive patterns, as compared to the subdued colors of Germany where he lived for thirty years. In some of his pictures transparent washes of color run freely over the surface. They are rhythmically combined in a modulation of anticipated musical scales.
Sometimes there are violent contrasts, making up compositions of reds, blues, greens, violets, browns, yellows, or ochres, which are released from all formal allusions.
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Guadalajara, 1972, Instituto Cultural Mexicano Norteamericano de Jalisco,Mexico

Many of the works exhibited are from Germany (note Selena Royale, famous actress from the'20's and friend of Paul & Virginia,  pushing friend in wheelchair)

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Blue and Yellow Composition
Acrylic on Canvas

"Color Field Pictures"In review in "El informador", February 12, 1978, p. 8


He is conscious of securing luminosity in his watercolors and large acrylics. In the Blue and Yellow Composition one notices his dark colors are more transparent than the opaque light colors. The combination of transparent and opaque colors result in depth. The viewer's curiosity arises when the transparencies move forward instead of backward. This was achieved by placing the smaller dark transparent color in front of the larger mass of yellow color in the background.



This site was last updated on 07/22/00
The Paul Fontaine Archive